Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Writing Tip Tuesday

Another handy revision technique is to use highlighters. (I work on hard copy but you can use the highlight feature of your word processing program.)

Like the focused read-through discussed last week, try reading the entire manuscript with only one element in mind.

But this time, use a highlighter each and every time you find one of the following:
  • Interior monologue (Too much? Slows pacing.)
  • Dialogue tags (Overused?)
  • Dialogue beats (Have you used the same ones too often?)
  • Words you know you tend to overuse
  • Any emotions mentioned (e.g., Sarah felt sad. John was surprised. Amanda was furious.)
  • All -ly adverbs (Can you replace with stronger verbs?)

Obviously, you will need to use a different color for each item.

This will give you an immediate visual image and give your revision FOCUS.

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